Special Issue "The Science of Shiga Toxin-Producing (Verotoxin-Producing) Escherichia coli (STEC): An Ongoing One Health Journey toward Improved Health and Food Safety"

A special issue of Microorganisms (ISSN 2076-2607). This special issue belongs to the section "Gut Microbiota".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 April 2023 | Viewed by 1605

Special Issue Editors

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Lethbridge, AB T1J 4B1, Canada
Interests: environmental performance of extensive and intensive livestock farming practices; land use life cycle assessment of livestock production systems and industries
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals
Department of Biological Sciences, University of Lethbridge, 4401 University Dr., Lethbridge, AB T1K 3M4, Canada
Interests: food and feed-borne pathogens; Escherichia coli; ergot alkaloids
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Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathology, University of Alberta, Edmonton, AB T6G 2R3, Canada
Interests: Escherichia coli; gastroenteritis; foodborne pathogens; molecular epidemiology
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals
Canadian Food Inspection Agency, Lethbridge Laboratory, Lethbridge, AB, Canada
Interests: genomics; machine learning; bioinformatics; microbiology
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Department of Pediatric Nephrology, Amalia Children’s Hospital, Radboud University Medical Center Nijmegen, Nijmegen, The Netherlands
Interests: kidney disease; pediatrics; hemolytic uremic syndrome; thrombotic microangiopathy; complement
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Department of Bacteria, Parasites, and Fungi, Unit of Foodborne Infections, Statens Serum Institute, Copenhagen, Denmark
Interests: molecular microbiology; pathogens; infection control
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Enteric Diseases Epidemiology Branch, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA, USA
Interests: illnesses caused by enteric bacteria (Campylobacter, Clostridium botulinum, E. coli, Listeria, Salmonella, Shigella, Vibrio, and other bacteria)
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Division of Environmental Health Sciences, School of Public Health, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN 55455, USA
Interests: infectious disease epidemiology; foodborne infections; enteric infections; zoonoses; molecular epidemiology

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Verotoxigenic Escherichia coli (VTEC), also called Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC), are major pathogens transmitted by food, water, animals and their environment, and directly from one person to another. They typically cause diarrheal illness but can also cause severe systemic disease, particularly in children and the elderly. Virulence is associated with a type III secretion system, which enables injection of bacterial effector proteins into host cells. In addition, Shiga toxins damage the kidneys and cause the hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS). No specific treatment is available for STEC infection. A better understanding of the pathogenesis and epidemiology of STEC infection is needed with an emphasis on One Health-approach solutions to the disease. This includes improved detection, understanding of reservoirs, control and detection in the food chain, and an understanding of STEC ecology.  For this Special Issue, we invite researchers to submit a review or original research article related to STEC detection, pathogenesis, epidemiology, ecology, or food safety that reflects the scientific community’s continued efforts to prevent and ameliorate STEC infections.

This Special Issue will contain papers related to STEC/VTEC research and will accompany the online meetings of VTEC 2022 (https://vtec2021.org/may-11-2021/). The in-person meeting of VTEC 2021 that was to be held in Banff, Alberta, Canada, has been rescheduled to May 2023 due to COVD-19. This online meeting will serve as a momentum-building event while we work towards meeting in person again soon.

Prof. Dr. Tim A. McAllister
Dr. Kim Stanford
Prof. Dr. Linda Chui
Dr. Chad R. Laing
Dr. Nicole Van De Kar
Dr. Flemming Scheutz
Dr. Patricia Griffin
Dr. Gillian Tarr
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Microorganisms is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2200 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • foodborne bacteria
  • bacterial pathogenesis
  • host-pathogen interactions
  • gut microbiota
  • STEC
  • VTEC E. coli
  • epidemiology
  • microbial ecology

Published Papers (1 paper)

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Prevalence and Characterization of Shiga Toxin Producing Escherichia coli Isolated from Animal Feed in Croatia
Microorganisms 2022, 10(9), 1839; https://doi.org/10.3390/microorganisms10091839 - 14 Sep 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1023
A survey on prevalence and number of Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia (E.) coli (STEC) in animal feed was carried out over a period of nine years in the Republic of Croatia. A total of 1688 feed samples were collected from feed factories [...] Read more.
A survey on prevalence and number of Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia (E.) coli (STEC) in animal feed was carried out over a period of nine years in the Republic of Croatia. A total of 1688 feed samples were collected from feed factories and poultry farms. Analysis included two standard procedures: sample enrichment and (a) immunomagnetic separation and plating on two selective media; or (b) plating on two selective media. Confirmation of STEC included morphological examination, biochemical tests, serotyping, and polymerase chain reaction. Morphological and biochemical characterization revealed 629 E. coli strains. Further serological screening method revealed 78 STEC and EPEC serotypes, while only 27 strains were confirmed as STEC with PCR. All positive samples (1.6%) originated from poultry farms and contained combination of virulence genes: eaeA, stx1, and/or stx2. Since the presence of stx (especially stx2) and eae are identified as risk factors for development of severe diseases in humans, results of this survey indicate that avian sources of STEC infections might be one of those “undefined sources” of human illnesses. Further research is necessary for evaluation of risks posed by contaminated feed, poultry, and environment. Full article
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